Reparation team making great progress with Huntingdon allotment project

Huntingdon allotments is one of many projects our young people, as part of the reparations service, have been involved with. This is a shared project with the Cambridgeshire Youth offending Services and has been a perfect location for working outside and a good meeting point for parents with the young people. Those who have worked at the allotments so far have enjoyed the planning and hard work involved in getting the allotment to a good standard.

Going forward, to ensure the allotment is regularly used, we approached Spring Common Academy. This is a community school for children aged 3-19 with special needs in the Huntingdon area. They will be able to use the allotments to harvest food for their cooking lessons.

Lots of ideas have also come from this such as making lots of raised beds different colours so the children can identify the plants easily. Paul who runs Wood Skills has offered to work at the allotment to make all the raised beds seating areas with the young people who are completing their reparation hours. By working through Winter, we will hopefully have the beds ready for the Spring.

Judith, Post 16 Preparation for Adult Manager at Spring Common Academy, is pleased about the locality of the allotments for the school, “We can walk in our community & practice road safety skills on the way & it’s easily accessible for all”. The peaceful and natural setting will also help support the mental health and wellbeing of the children. She adds “We can’t wait to grow fruits & vegetables to pick, harvest and use within our cooking classes for lunch. It’ll help us with our attitudes to healthy eating as well”.

By providing a safe, practical space and seeing the benefits of their hard work, we hope our young people will understand that they can make a positive difference within a community and this will play a huge part in changing their lives for the better. The whole project will hopefully be completed by next Summer but the progress so far has been fantastic!